Underground Injection and Storage

Experimental Analysis of CO2 Injection on Permeability of Vuggy Carbonate Aquifers

[+] Author and Article Information
Ibrahim M. Mohamed

e-mail: ibrahim.Mohamed@pe.tamu.edu

Jia He

e-mail: Jia.He@pe.tamu.edu

Hisham A. Nasr-El-Din

Professor of Petroleum Engineering
Holder of the John Edgar Holt Endowed Chair
e-mail: Hisham.Nasreldin@pe.tamu.edu
Petroleum Engineering Department,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843-3116

Contributed by the Petroleum Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Energy Resources Technology. Manuscript received June 28, 2012; final manuscript received September 28, 2012; published online November 28, 2012. Assoc. Editor: Kau-Fui Wong.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 135(1), 013301 (Nov 28, 2012) (7 pages) Paper No: JERT-12-1147; doi: 10.1115/1.4007799 History: Received June 28, 2012; Revised September 28, 2012

Reactions of CO2 with formation rock may lead to an enhancement in the permeability due to rock dissolution, or damage (reduction in the core permeability) because of the precipitation of reaction products. The reaction is affected by aquifer conditions (pressure, temperature, initial porosity, and permeability), and the injection scheme (injection flow rate, CO2:brine volumetric ratio, and the injection time). The effects of temperature, injection flow rate, and injection scheme on the permeability alteration due to CO2 injection into heterogeneous dolomite rock is addressed experimentally in this paper. Twenty coreflood tests were conducted using Silurian dolomite cores. Thirty pore volumes of CO2 and brine were injected in water alternating gas (WAG) scheme under supercritical conditions at temperatures ranging from 21 to 121 °C, and injection rates of 2.0–5.0 cm3/min. Concentrations of Ca++, Mg++, and Na+ were measured in the core effluent samples. Permeability alteration was evaluated by measuring the permeability of the cores before and after the experiment. Two sources of damage in permeability were noted in this study: (1) due to precipitation of calcium carbonate, and (2) due to migration of clay minerals present in the core. Temperature and injection scheme don't have a clear impact on the core permeability. A good correlation between the initial and final core permeability was noted, and the ratio of final permeability to the initial permeability is lower for low permeability cores.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Silurian dolomite core

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Effect of temperature and injection flow rate on the rock dissolution and change in core permeability

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Pressure drop across the core #1, T = 93 °C, injection flow rate = 5 cm3/min

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

(a) Core effluent sample one day after collection. (b) Precipitated particles after filtration of core effluent samples.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Concentrations of Ca++ and Mg++ in the core effluent samples, core #1

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Effect of injection flow rate on rock dissolution and change in core permeability. Caeffluent and Mgeffluent = total weight of calcium and magnesium collected in the core effluent samples. Cacore and Mgcore = total weight of calcium and magnesium originally present in the core.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Effect of No. of WAG cycles on rock dissolution and change in core permeability

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Relationship between the initial and final core permeability for the 20 cores used in the current study

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Effect of brine:CO2 volumetric ratio on rock dissolution and change in core permeability



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